Puerto Varas Location
Located in the Patagonia, At 20 km of the southern capital city of Puerto Montt, the lake front city of Puerto Varas forms part of the Tenth Region, also known as The Lakes Region.
Latitude South -41,3264885 - Longitude West -72,988205
The closest airport is found in the city of Puerto Montt. From there you can take a 25-minute taxi ride into Puerto Varas for around $16.000 Chilean pesos (U$ 32.) Most hostels and hotels have transfer service that you can request upon making your reservation. Also available are buses, which leave every 20 minutes from the airport and make the last stop at the bus terminal in Puerto Montt. The service costs around $1.500 pesos (U$ 3.) From there you can continue traveling to Puerto Varas by boarding any of the local buses which leave from the terminal every 5 minutes or so and costs around $800 pesos (u$ 2.). If you are travelling relatively heavy and are in a hurry to arrive we do not recommend this last option. The trip lasts around half an hour. Keep in mind that the last bus leaves Puerto Montt at 10 p.m.
Travel within Chile is possible via companies such as Buses JAC, Pullman Bus, Turbus, Bus Norte, and Cruz del Sur to name a few of the more reputable companies. From Argentina, be it from San Carlos de Bariloche or Villa La Angostura, Andesman, Bus Norte and Turbus provide more frequent services. All of these companies have direct service to Puerto Varas but you may have to make the transfer from Puerto Montt via local bus service for $800 pesos (U$ 2). Of course, schedules are subject to change depending on the date or time that you chose to travel. Keep in mind that the last bus leaves Puerto Montt at 10p.m.
Although not the most scenic, the Route 5 otherwise known as the Panamerican Highway is the fastest route to travel by. From Osorno to Puerto Montt the 89 km stretch of highway may be the most convenient but is not the only option.
We recommend one of two options for those seeking a more scenic arrival. Both start off on Route 215 from either Osorno or Bariloche, Argentina via the town of Entre Lagos, where you can steal glimpses of Lago Puyehue. From the Route 215 you will follow the route to the right if you are travelling from Osorno or to the left if travelling from Bariloche, Argentina. This route leads you into another unpaved road heading toward Lake Rupanco- well known for its excellent beaches and water sports as well as its fly fishing activities. Followiing the main road you will have two options: Puerto Octay (to the right) or Las Cascadas (left.) Any of the alternatives that you may choose will be an excellent choice.
Vía Puerto Octay (Bahía and Puerto Norte of Lago Llanquihue): The end of the XIX century buildings stand out in this small town. Following the paved road toward Quillanto another road, unpaved, leads to the old port, Los Bajos, whose ruins you can still visit. Still further on you will come across the town of Frutillar. Frutillar is not only renowned for the characteristic view of Volcanoes Osorno, Calbuco, Tronador and Puntiagudo from the towns beaches but also boasts an Event Center as well as the home to its concert events that take place in the Teatro del Lago. Continuing along the coastal route that winds along Punta Larga , which leads first to Totoral Bay, you will eventually arrive to the city of Llanquihue (not to be confused with the lake of the same name.) The Vicente Pérez Rosales Avenue runs into Route 5, otherwise known as the Panamerican Highway, leaving you only 10 kilometers short of the 180km trip.
Vía Las Cascadas:This lakeside beach town’s extensive beach are notable for their black volcanic sand and is only the first stop before reaching the town of Ensenada. A bit after driving on the paved stretch of the road, you will notice a side road on the left hand side. This road leads up into the Volcano Osorno’s Ski Center where you can enjoy the winter season or enjoy the birds eye view from the Center’s lifts during the off season. If you simply choose to continue on directly without the side trip to the Ski Center, the route 225 towards Ensenada on the right hand side winds along the lakeside until Puerto Varas completing the 180km trip. If you are up for more travelling take the path on the left hand side toward Todos Los Santos Lake and Petrohué Falls. The 20km excursion off the main route is a pleasant trip. Return by the same route to end up at Puerto Varas.
The 13 hour trip from Bariloche is one of the more beautiful options for connecting the dots between these two towns. Since the time and side trips may take you from hours to days depending on your tastes and disposition we recommend you visit the page heading Activities/Travel Zone where you can study the details in the Lakes Crossing Section. The stetch of land and lakes is traversed by 3 boats and 4 bus trips and is coordinated by one tour operator